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The Poet


From W [Viva] (1931)
LVII

somewhere i have never travelled,gladly beyond
any experience,your eyes have their silence:
in your most frail gesture are things which enclose me,
or which i cannot tough because they are too near

your slightest look easily will unclose me
though i have closed myself as fingers,
you open always petal by petal myself as Spring opens
(touching skillfully,mysteriously)her first rose

or if your wish be to close me,i and
my life will shut very beautifully,suddenly,
as when the heart of this flower imagines
the snow carefully everywhere descending;

nothing which we are to perceive in this world equals
the power of your intense fragility:whose texture
compels me with the colour of its countries,
rendering death and forever with each breathing

(i do not know what it is about you that closes
and opens;only something in me understands
the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses)
nobody,not even the rain,has such small hands

From No Thanks (1935)

12

why why

How many winds make wonderful
and is luck The skeleton of life
or did anybody Open a moment

are Not

more than(if Green invents because
where might Where live
can fisherMen swim and
who's myself's Antimere
Should words carry wearpons)are

not Less than(that

by doDreaming heteronomously
metameric me are picked from
dumb sleePdeep
ness squirmcurl

ing homonously merameric You



13

	    r-p-o-p-h-e-s-s-a-g-r
	     who
a)s w(e loo)k
upnowgath
	 PPEGORHRASS
		      eringint(o-
aThe):l
	eA
	  !p:
S
				 a
	       (r
rIvInG          ,gRrEaPsPhOs)
			     to
rea(be)rran(com)gi(e)ngly
,grasshopper;



24

"let's start a magazine

to hell with literature
we want something redblooded

lousy with pure
reeking with stark
and fearlessly obscene

but really clean
get what I mean
let's not spoil it
let's make it serious

something authentic and delirious
you know something genuine like a mark
in a toilet

graced with guts and gutted
with grace"

squeeze your nuts and open your face



27

little joe gould has lost his teeth and doesn't know where
to find them(and found a secondhand set which click)little
gould used to amputate his appetite with bad brittle
candy but just(nude eel)now little joe lives on air

Harvard Brevis Est for Handkerchief read Papernapkin no laundry
bulls likes People preferring Negroes Indians Youse
n.b. ye twang of little joe(yankee)gould irketh sundry
who are trying to find their minds(but never had any to lose)

and a myth is as good as a smile but little joe gould's quote oral
history unquote might(publishers note)be entitled a wraith's
progress or mainly awash while chiefly submerged or an amoral
morality sort-of-aliveing by innumerable kind-of-deaths

(Amérique Je T'Aime and it may be fun to be fooled
but it's more fun to be more to be fun to be little joe gould)



30

kumrads die because they're told)
kumrads die before they're old
(kumrads aren't afraid to die
kumrads don't
and kumrads won't
believe in life)and death knows whie

(all good kumrads you can tell
by their altruistic smell
moscow pipes good kumrads dance)
kumrads enjoy
s.freud knows whoy
the hope that you may mess your pance

every kumrad is a bit
of quite unmitigated hate
(travelling in a futile groove
god knows why)
and so do i
(because they are afraid to love



From New Poems (1938)

4

(of Ever-Ever Land i speak sweet morons gather roun' who does not dare to stand or sit may take it lying down) down with the human soul and everything else uncanned for everyone carries canopeners in Ever-Ever Land (for Ever-Ever Land is a place that's as simple as simple can be and was built that way on purpose by simple people like we) down with hell and heaven and the religious fuss infinity pleased our parents one inch looks good to us (and Ever-Ever Land is a place that's measured and safe and known where it's lucky to be unlucky and the hitler lies down with the cohn) down above all with love and everything perverse or which makes some feel more better when all ought to feel less worse (but only sameness is normal in Ever-Ever Land for a bad cigar is a woman but a gland is only a gland)


13

if i

or anybody don't
know where it her his

my next meal's coming from
i say to hell with that
that doesn't matter(and if

he she it or everybody gets a
bellyful without
lifting my finger i say to hell
with that i

say that doesn't matter)but
if somebody
or you are beautiful or
deep or generous what
I say is

whistle that
sing that yell that spell
that out big(bigger than cosmic
rays war earthquakes famine or the ex

prince of whoses diving into
a whatses to rescue miss nobody's
probably handbag)because i say that's not

swell(get me) babe not(understand me)lousy
kid that's something else my sweet(i feel that's

true)



16

beware beware beware
because because because
equals(transparent or

science must
bait laws with
stars to catch telescopes

)why.
Being is
patience is patient is(patiently

all the eyes of these with listening
hands only fishermen are prevented by cathedrals


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